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oil train 20 articles

NTSB Recommends Four Railroad Safety Measures In Wake of 2015 Rail Accidents

Federal safety investigators recommended the railroad industry take four measures to improve rail safety based on its findings from two separate 2015 train accidents. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said its recommendations stem from its probe of a railroad accident in Kansas City, Kansas, that killed a Union Pacific employee in September 2015 and an oil train derailment in Heimdal, North Dakota, that released more than 96,000 gallons of crude oil into the environment in May 2015. In the Kansas accident, a Union Pacific Railroad foreman died after being struck by a remote-controlled train during switching operations at the ... Read More

Phillips 66 Drops Controversial California Oil Train Expansion Plan

Phillips 66 has agreed to drop its lawsuit challenging the California county of San Louis Obispo’s denial of a proposed oil train terminal the energy corporation wanted to build in the coastal town of Nipomo. Phillips 66 started pushing its Rail Spur Project in 2013, hoping to build the terminal in Nipomo that would have required oil trains to haul more than 7 million gallons of crude oil per week through California. Much of the oil train’s haul would have included tar sands crude, a highly viscous form of oil that oil companies treat with a multitude of toxic chemicals ... Read More

Oil Train Safety Law Veto Sparks Protest in New Jersey

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s veto of an oil train safety bill that would increase transparency and accountability among freight train companies sparked a protest Tuesday, Aug. 22, with public safety and environmental advocates calling on state legislators to override the veto. The bill, sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg, D-Teaneck, “would require railroads to submit disaster response and cleanup plans to state officials, make their bridge inspection reports available to the state Department of Transportation and disclose routing and volume information publicly to assist emergency response personnel,” according to NorthJersey.com. The legislation is one of several bills being ... Read More

CSX Train Derailment Forces Pennsylvania evacuation

A CSX freight train laden with hazardous materials derailed in Southwestern Pennsylvania Wednesday morning, igniting fires and forcing the evacuation of an entire town. According to the Associated Press, at least 32 cars of the CSX freight train careened off the tracks in Hyndman, Pennsylvania, destroying the garage of a residence. A CSX spokesman said at least one of the cars carrying gasoline and one laden with molten sulfur spilled and caught fire. Authorities investigating the accident haven’t determined what caused the train to derail. It’s also unclear how extensive the damage is. According to the AP, the residential garage ... Read More

Ethanol Spill In Iowa Creek  Underscores Need For Better Railroad Safety, Critics Say

Iowa environmental groups are calling on lawmakers for better legislation and regulation of the railroad industry after a Union Pacific freight train hauling ethanol derailed near the town of Graettinger, Iowa, March 10. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) continues to investigate the derailment, which caused some of the train’s ethanol-laden cars to topple into the Jack Creek in the northern part of the state. Fifteen of the cars caught fire and some of them continued to burn two days after the 1 a.m. crash. The derailment and fire also destroyed a bridge running over the creek. Authorities say the ... Read More

Oregon Lawmakers Confront Future Oil Train Disasters With New Safety Bills

Two new bills intended to protect the environment and communities from oil train disasters have been introduced in the Oregon legislature with strong support among environmentalists, Native American leaders, and others who believe not enough is being done to prevent or at least limit oil-train derailments and spills. Support for the bills has been fueled largely by the June 3 Union Pacific oil train derailment near Mosier, Oregon, which contaminated pristine forested areas with highly toxic and volatile crude oil from North Dakota’s Bakken region. The spill and fire occurred alongside tracks paralleling the Columbia River, a swift-moving, cold-water salmon ... Read More

BNSF Pays Illinois $50,000 Civil Penalty For 2015 Oil Train Derailment

Railroad giant BNSF has agreed to pay $50,000 in civil penalties for a 2015 oil train derailment in Galena, Illinois, that released several thousand gallons of oil , triggered a  massive fire that burned for days, and forced the evacuation of area residents. Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan said the settlement resolves environmental concerns triggered by the March 2015 derailment and spill, which Delaware-based BNSF was court-ordered to clean and monitor. Nobody was injured by the derailment, but the accident released about 30,000 gallons of crude oil, contaminating the ground and threatening local water sources, including the Galena and Mississippi ... Read More

Final Report on 2013 North Dakota oil train crash faults defective axle in other train

Federal investigators released a final report Feb. 7 on a fiery oil train derailment and spill that forced the evacuation of Casselton, North Dakota, blaming the disaster on a defective axle on another train. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said the Dec. 30, 2013, derailment and crash occurred when a defective axle broke on a BNSF train hauling soybeans, forcing a section of the train to derail. Two men aboard the oil train told investigators that heavy, blowing snow obscured the tracks from their vision shortly before they saw a derailed train car lying across the tracks. The men ... Read More

Fuel Train Derailment Forces Evacuation of Minnesota town

A Union Pacific Railroad train hauling butane and propane gas partially derailed in southern Minnesota Friday morning, forcing the evacuation of the a small town. Approximately a dozen cars of the 146-car fuel train toppled off the tracks for unknown reasons around 5:45 a.m. Two of the cars were laden with liquid propane and butane gas, both highly explosive fuels. It is not known how much of the fuel escaped, but authorities were mainly concerned with a tear in the car containing propane. Concern over the hazard was serious enough to prompt an evacuation of Ellendale, a town of about 700 ... Read More

Review of agency responsible for pipeline, hazardous materials oversight finds serious performance issues

Federal regulators charged with overseeing the nation’s 2.6 million miles of pipeline and a million shipments of hazardous materials per day have missed deadline after deadline in developing and implementing safety rules to protect the public from oil train derailments, pipeline spills, and other disasters, an internal audit conducted by the U.S. Department of Transportation has found. In a report published Oct. 14, the Transportation Department’s Office of Inspector General said that the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) “has faced criticism from Congress for its lack of timeliness in implementing mandates and recommendations.” The House Transportation and Infrastructure ... Read More